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Gordhan must issue ‘World Cup directive’ for ANC centenary

Wilmot James, DA Federal Chairperson
20 November 2011

Last year, the Minister of Finance issued a directive to government departments to avoid illegitimate expenditure of public funds on FIFA World Cup tickets.
I will be writing to Minister Gordhan to request that he issue a similar directive to prevent the ANC abusing public money for its centenary celebrations next year. He should make it clear that any expenditure by local, provincial or national government on the centenary celebrations will be regarded as fruitless and wasteful expenditure.
There is every reason to believe that the ANC is planning to use public money to pay for this party event:
•    According to ANC spokesperson, Keith Khoza, public money will be used to fund the security, transport and accommodation costs for over sixty heads of state invited to the ANC’s centenary celebrations. This could cost up to R60 million.
•    The Premier of the Free State, Ace Magashule, has indicated in the provincial legislature that millions of rands have been allocated from provincial coffers for the ANC’s centenary celebrations in the run-up to the ANC’s Mangaung conference next year.
•    The public entity Transnet revealed in response to a parliamentary question that it had been approached by the ANC to help fund its centenary celebration.
•    Minister of Defence Lindiwe Sisulu replied to a parliamentary question that her department had not been approached by the ANC for funding, but that she would gladly offer it if she was asked.
 This is only the tip of the iceberg.
There are no doubt many more instances of the ANC requesting money or even receiving money from the state for its centenary celebrations.
Our Finance Minister must nip this in the bud, just as he did when it became apparent that government departments were abusing public money to buy World Cup tickets.
We cannot allow public money to go on caviar and Dom Perignon for ANC fat cats while so many of our people struggle to buy bread and get access to clean drinking water.
For the millions of impoverished South Africans, the struggle for freedom from want is far from over.